While there are a lot of brands producing fliegers (aka, those very German-style pilot watches), we have not seen a lot of them come up on Kickstarter. Sure, we did cover a quartz one a little bit ago (here), but divers seem to be much more popular. Well, no matter. If you like the flieger style, but want something of a Swiss automatic nature, then the Altitude Flieger is one you’re going to want to check out.
Look at the Altitude Flieger, you might say, well, this looks like just about every other flieger that is out there. Black dial, white indices and sword hands, complete with the triangle at 12 o’clock. Tuck that into a matte case with an oversized crown and, well, you’ve got a watch that isn’t breaking any new ground, design-wise. So, I did the simple thing – I asked the brand that simple question – why your watch? And here’s what they said:
Customers would select our Flieger due to two points. The first point is the price. Our Flieger which has the same specs as the High-end Laco Fliegers will be 60% cheaper. The second point is that our Flieger contains a SWISS Automatic movement (ETA 2824-2) which most current market Fliegers do not possess.
For me, one thing on the Altitude Flieger that stands out is the case – at 47mm, this is a dramatically large watch. I might opt for something smaller, personally, but a true pilots watch used to be fairly oversized, for ease of reading and use. Sure, the case is ginormous for the ETA 2824-2 movement, but, hey, some people just like big watches. At least there’s no date display to remind you of how oversized it is.
I also like how they mixed up the design of the strap on the Altitude Flieger as well. It keeps that heavy leather look, but there’s a stepped taper in it that gives you something that fits the lug and is not super-bulky under the wrist. It also manages to keep that vintage look with the rivets, and the step in it for the taper certainly looks like how it could have been done in the 40s.
The project closes out on December 20th, and, as of this writing, sits at about 20% funded. Not a lot of heat out of the gate, to be sure, but still plenty of time for it to catch on and fund. And, with early bird pricing starting at just $389, for a Swiss automatic, I would not be surprised to see that happen. Project Page
Brand & Model: Altitude Flieger
Price: early bird pricing starts at $389
Who we think it might be for: You’re someone who wants a large-and-in-charge, sterile Flieger homage
Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen? Nah – the case size alone breaks the deal for me
If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: First one out, keeping classic, sure. Next design, though, let’s break the mold a bit
What spoke to me the most about this watch: For a single stand-out component, it’s those straps.
Tech Specs from Altitude
- Case: 47mm, stainless steel
- Crystal: Domed, sapphire
- Movement: Swiss ETA 2824-2
- Strap: leather
- Lume: Superluminova